Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality

Chongqing, China

Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality

Chongqing, China
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Liu L.,Southwest University | Liu L.,Beijing Normal University | Feng T.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Background: Humans often show impatience when making intertemporal choice for monetary rewards, preferring small rewards delivered immediately to larger rewards delivered after a delay, which reflects a fundamental psychological principle: delay discounting. However, we propose that episodic prospection humans can vividly envisage exerts a strong and broad influence on individuals' delay discounting. Specifically, episodic prospection may affect individuals' intertemporal choice by the negative or positive emotion of prospection. Methodology/Principal Findings: The present study explored how episodic prospection modulated delay discounting by emotion. Study 1 showed that participants were more inclined to choose the delayed but larger rewards when they imaged positive future events than when they did not image events; Study 2 showed that participants were more inclined to choose the immediate but smaller rewards when they imaged negative future events than when they did not image events; In contrast, study 3 showed that choice preferences of participants when they imaged neutral future events were the same as when they did not image events. Conclusions/Significance: By manipulating the emotion valence of episodic prospection, our findings suggested that positive emotion made individuals tend to choose delayed rewards, while negative emotion made individuals tend to choose immediate rewards. Only imaging events with neutral emotion did not affect individuals' choice preference. Thus, the valence of imaged future events' emotion might play an important role in individuals' intertemporal choice. It is possible that the valence of emotion may affect the changed direction (promote or inhibit) of individuals' delay discounting, while the ability to image future events affects the changed degree of individuals' delay discounting. © 2013 Liu et al.


Valentini E.,University of Rome La Sapienza | Valentini E.,Instituto Of Ricovero E Cura A Carattere Scientifico | Betti V.,Instituto Of Ricovero E Cura A Carattere Scientifico | Betti V.,University of Chieti Pescara | And 4 more authors.
Cortex | Year: 2013

Introduction: Neuroimaging studies indicate that hypnotic suggestions of increased and decreased pain intensity and unpleasantness may modulate somatosensory and cingulate cortex activity, respectively. Methods: Using a within subject design and a strict subject selection procedure, we tested in High (Highs) and Low (Lows) hypnotically suggestible individuals whether hypnotic suggestions of sensory and affective hypoalgesia or hyperalgesia differentially affected subjective ratings of laser-induced pain and nociceptive-related brain activity in the time- and time-frequency domain. Results: Hypnotic modulation of pain intensity and unpleasantness affected subjective ratings of laser-induced pain only in Highs. Such modulation was more specific for unpleasantness manipulation and more evident for suggestions of hyperalgesia. Importantly, Highs and Lows showed increase and decrease of P2a and P2b wave amplitudes and gamma band power, respectively. Conclusions: Hypnotic suggestions exerted a top-down modulatory effect on both evoked and induced-cortical brain responses triggered by selective nociceptive laser inputs. Furthermore, correlation analyses indicated that gamma power modulation and suggestions of hyperalgesia may reflect the process of allocating control resources to salient and threatening sensory-affective dimensions of pain. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Zeng J.,Southwest University | Zeng J.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Zhang Q.,Southwest University | Chen C.,Southwest University | And 2 more authors.
Brain Research | Year: 2013

Sunk cost effect (also called escalation of commitment, etc) is a pervasive, interesting and famous decision bias, which has been intensively discussed in psychology, economics, management, political science, zoology, etc. To date, little has been known about the neural basis of this phenomenon. We investigated it by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to monitor healthy subjects' brain activities when they made decisions in a task wherein sunk cost and incremental cost were systematically manipulated. Higher sunk cost only increased activity of some brain areas (mainly lateral frontal and parietal cortices, which are involved in risk-taking), whereas lower incremental cost mainly increased activity of some brain areas (including striatum and medial prefrontal cortex, which are sensitive to rewards). No overlapping brain areas were found to respond to both sunk cost and incremental cost. These results favor certainty effect over self-justification or diminishing sensitivity as account of sunk cost effect. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Zeng J.,Southwest University | Zeng J.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Zou Y.,Southwest University | Zhang Q.,Southwest University
Brain Research | Year: 2013

To study if the neural system responds the same or differently to the same rewards in different social competition conditions, event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded as 18 participants engaged in two kinds of decision tasks. In the auction condition (the competition condition), participants were instructed to bid against their competitors and then informed the outcome (failing and gaining no money, or winning and gaining a certain amount of money); in the lottery condition (the neutral condition), subjects were asked to play a lottery against the computer and then informed the outcome (the same as in auction). Scalp ERPs revealed that, in the outcome phase, failing (rewards=0) in auction induced a larger late positive complex response (in the time window of 700-1200 ms) than that in lottery; while winning (rewards>0) in lottery induced a larger late positive complex response (in the time window of 500-800 ms) than that in auction. The present data suggest, when evaluating rewards, our neural systems care about not only rewards themselves, but also how the rewards have been obtained. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Jackson T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Jackson T.,Southwest University | Chen H.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Chen H.,Southwest University | And 3 more authors.
Clinical Journal of Pain | Year: 2014

Objective: Numerous studies have documented rates of chronic pain in developed western nations; however, little is known about its prevalence or correlates in rapidly developing countries, where much of the world's population lives. This study was designed to assess the prevalence of chronic pain among adults in Chongqing, China and the correlates of chronicity among respondents with pain and degree of impairment within the subgroup reporting chronic pain. Design: A structured telephone interview was used within a cross-sectional design. Chronic pain was defined as the pain that had persisted for ≥3 months. Participants: Adults from a random sample of 1003 Chongqing households completed a structured telephone interview on pain experiences of themselves and other family members over the past 6 months. Results: Overall, 42.2% of interviewees reported pain for at least 1 day during the past 6 months and 25.8% experienced pain lasting for at least 3 months. The most common complaints were back pain (17.6%), headache (14.2%), joint pain, (10.5%), and abdominal pain (10.4%). Among those who reported pain, correlates of a chronic duration included older age, presence of back pain, heightened impairment, use of Chinese medicine, and greater numer of interventions used for pain management. For interviewees whose pain was chronic, increased functional impairment was related to older age, presence of pain every day, and increased likelihood of consulting physicians and using Chinese medicine to manage pain. Conclusions: Rates of chronic pain in Chongqing appear to approximate to those reported in western countries. A significant minority of those affected report substantial or severe impairment and are more likely than less impaired cohorts to have sought medical interventions to manage pain. Copyright © 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Feng P.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Chen Z.,Southwest University | Lei X.,Southwest University
Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience | Year: 2014

Investigations of fear conditioning in rodents and humans have illuminated the neural mechanisms of fear acquisition and extinction. However, the neural mechanism of memory consolidation of fear conditioning is not well understood. To address this question, we measured brain activity and the changes in functional connectivity following fear acquisition using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. The amygdala-dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and hippocampus-insula functional connectivity were enhanced, whereas the amygdala-medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) functional coupling was decreased during fear memory consolidation. Furthermore, the amygdala-mPFC functional connectivity was negatively correlated with the subjective fear ratings. These findings suggest the amygdala functional connectivity with dACC and mPFC may play an important role in memory consolidation of fear conditioning. The change of amygdala-mPFC functional connectivity could predict the subjective fear. Accordingly, this study provides a new perspective for understanding fear memory consolidation. © The Author (2013). Published by Oxford University Press.


Liu L.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality
Brain Research | Year: 2012

Intertemporal choice may involve two processing stages: a valuation stage and a choice stage. Decision makers must integrate the various dimensions of an option (e.g., money, time) into a single measure of its subjective value (the valuation stage) and then choose the option that is the most valuable (the choice stage). Although previous studies have implicated that subjective values are represented by a diverse set of brain regions (e.g., vmPFC, VStr, and PCC) in intertemporal choice, it is not yet known which of these regions contain information that directly predicts subsequent choice. To address this question, we measured brain activity using functional MRI while participants performed a simple intertemporal choice task. The results found that participants' decision could be encoded by three specific brain areas (vmPFC, ACC, and PCC) even before they were required to make a choice, while the left posterior insula showed positively active in the choice stage when individuals selected the delayed rewards compared to the immediate rewards. These findings suggest that activation patterns in the vmPFC, ACC, and PCC were able to predict the subsequent choice preference; however, left posterior insula may play an important role for choice preference in the choice stage. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Feng T.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Feng P.,Southwest University | Chen Z.,Southwest University
Brain Research | Year: 2013

Investigations of fear conditioning in rodents and humans have illuminated the neural mechanisms of fear acquisition and extinction. However, the neural mechanism of automatic memory consolidation of fear conditioning is still unclear. To address this question, we measured brain activity following fear acquisition using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI). In the current study, we used a marker of fMRI, amplitude of low-frequency (0.01-0.08 Hz) fluctuation (ALFF) to quantify the spontaneous brain activity. Brain activity correlated to fear memory consolidation was observed in parahippocampus, insula, and thalamus in resting-state. Furthermore, after acquired fear conditioning, compared with control group some brain areas showed ALFF increased in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in the experimental group, whereas some brain areas showed decreased ALFF in striatal regions (caudate, putamen). Moreover, the change of ALFF in vmPFC was positively correlated with the subjective fear ratings. These findings suggest that the parahippocampus, insula, and thalamus are the neural substrates of fear memory consolidation. The difference in activity could be attributed to a homeostatic process in which the vmPFC and ACC were involved in the fear recovery process, and change of ALFF in vmPFC predicts subjective fear ratings. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Zeng J.,Southwest University | Zeng J.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Wang Y.,Southwest University | Wang Y.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

To investigate the neural processes of decision-makings between attractive females and money, we recorded 18 male participants' brain event-related potentials (ERPs) when they performed a novel task of deciding between viewing an attractive female's fuzzy picture in clear and gaining a certain amount of money. Two types of attractive females were included: sexy females and beautiful females. Several new electrophysiological discoveries were obtained as following. First, the beautiful females vs. money task (task B) elicited a larger positive ERP deflection (P2) than the sexy females vs. money task (task S) between 290 and 340 ms, and this probably related to the perception matching process between a visual input and an internal representation or expectation. Second, task S evoked greater negative ERP waves (N2) than task B during the time window of 340-390 ms, and this might relate to response conflict and cognitive monitoring for impulsive tendency. Third, the ERP positivity in task S was larger than task B in the time interval of 550-1000 ms, reflecting that sexy female images may have higher decision value for males than beautiful female images. Fourth, compared with choosing to gain money, choosing to view an attractive female evoked a larger late positive component (LPC) during the same time window, possibly because attractive females are more direct and evolutionarily earlier rewards for males than money amounts. © 2012 Zeng et al.


Liu L.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Southwest University | Feng T.,Key Laboratory of Cognition and Personality | Suo T.,Southwest University | And 4 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Background: Why do some people live for the present, whereas others save for the future? The evolutionary framework of life history theory predicts that preference for delay of gratification should be influenced by social economic status (SES). However, here we propose that the decision to choose alternatives in immediate and delayed gratification in poverty environments may have a psychological dimension. Specifically, the perception of environmental poverty cues may induce people alike to favor choices with short-term, likely smaller benefit than choices with long-term, greater benefit. Methodology/Principal Findings: The present study was conducted to explore how poverty and affluence cues affected individuals' intertemporal choices. In our first two experiments, individuals exposed explicitly (Experiment 1) and implicitly (Experiment 2) to poverty pictures (the poverty cue) were induced to prefer immediate gratification compared with those exposed to affluence pictures (the affluence cue). Furthermore, by the manipulation of temporary perceptions of poverty and affluence status using a lucky draw game; individuals in the poverty state were more impulsive in a manner, which made them pursue immediate gratification in intertemporal choices (Experiment 3). Thus, poverty cues can lead to short-term choices. Conclusions/Significance: Decision makers chose more frequently the sooner-smaller reward over the later-larger reward as they were exposed to the poverty cue. This indicates that it is that just the feeling of poverty influences intertemporal choice - the actual reality of poverty (restricted resources, etc.) is not necessary to get the effect. Furthermore, our findings emphasize that it is a change of the poverty-affluence status, not a trait change, can influence individual preference in intertemporal choice. © 2012 Liu et al.

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